Say what you will about Jimmy Kimmel’s checkered history of comedic blackface and Man Show misogyny, but the late-night host has been effectively vocal about the Republicans’ war on your heath care. Ever since now-3-year-old son Billy Kimmel was born with several congenital heart conditions, Kimmel has been unsparing in attacking those GOP lawmakers whose Viagra-fluffed boners for killing the Affordable Care Act Kimmel described on Thursday’s show as just one of “the atrocities coming out of this White House.” One can only imagine the scar tissue still coalescing around the new asshole Kimmel tore Republican Senator William Cassidy (R-LA) for, as Kimmel put it in a searing 2017 monologue, lying to Kimmel’s face in promising that, of course, the Republican Party would never, ever, not even once, try to strip protections for people with so-called “pre-existing conditions.”
You know, like a child born with not one but two life-threatening heart ailments that insurance companies (and let’s never forget that they could end this soulless “pre-existing” bullshit any time they wanted to) would use to disqualify him from life-saving coverage. It’s easy to get lost in the bloodless verbiage of obfuscating politician- and bureaucrat-speak, something Kimmel’s wife, mother of Billy, and longtime Jimmy Kimmel Live writer Molly McNearney sought to overcome by shooting her own righteously furious, heartbreakingly vivid video about her family’s own little “pre-existing condition.” His name’s Billy.
In the video, scored to Ben Folds “The Luckiest” and Frank Ocean’s “Godspeed,” just to rip your own heart out a little more, McNearney shows photos and clips of her son’s joyous birth, followed by the years of multiple heart surgeries, invasive treatments, and terrified but loving parental caresses that have gone into Billy Kimmel’s long and ridiculously expensive recovery. Kimmel himself has always been forthright about how his position as millionaire celebrity makes his family’s plight exponentially easier to cope with than that faced by the millions of other Americans relying on the President Obama-passed Affordable Care Act. In her onscreen text, McNearney names the senators (all Republican) who’ve voted to destroy Obamacare and eliminate pre-existing condition coverage, while turning the text a blood red to simply state “He’s lying” after a clip of Donald Trump, yes, lying about protecting that coverage. (He’s in court right now suing to eliminate it, while attempting to cram a right-wing ACA hater onto the Supreme Court, just to twist the knife deeper.)
As Kimmel laid out before playing his wife’s plea for people to vote Donald Trump and his venal, heartless GOP accomplices onto the growing unemployment rolls, “This isn’t a partisan issue.” Noting that fully 80 percent of the country thinks making health insurers actually, you know, insure people who need it is a halfway decent idea (including two-thirds even of the MAGA cult), Kimmel otherwise let McNearney’s words—and the happily thriving Billy’s face—do the talking.
Election’s in 11 days. Vote like your life depends on it.